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Folding@Home (not to do with Ironing) :)

Discussion in 'The Lounge - Off Topic' started by Modey, Aug 5, 2007.

  1. Modey

    Modey Terabyte Poster

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    Anybody contributed to the Folding@Home project?

    It's a bit like SETI except this time its for medical research. My friend left his copy of CustomPC when he visited recently, and they are running a friendly competition to see who can contribute the most to the project.

    If anyone fancies a go, the team number you need to put in (to be part of the CustomPC team) is 35947. When you run the client, pick a name then use that team number. Each month they give away a £250 quid graphics card to one person (not sure how they pick, probably out of a hat)

    I decided I would take the piss a little bit and see high up the table I could get and also to see if I could get featured as one of their highest contributing newcomers etc... So I have currently got it running on 3 quad core Xeon servers, 2 dual Xeon servers, 20 Core2Duo Dell's, and 20 3Ghz P4's. Oh, and on my work laptop and home PC of course. :) I'm gonna get it running on another 12 of the C2D Dell's when I get in on Monday. Got to ghost them first though and it's serving as a nice burn in test as they are all brand new machines.

    It's only recognising about 27 CPU's on the go last time I checked. Some of the slower PC's are crunching projects that will take another few days to finish and it doesn't log their work until then. Quite good fun to go up the ranks and see the virtual certificates they award you. :)

    There is some more info on the CustomPC Forum about the team side of things and how to get the best out of your PC etc.. for this project.
     
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  2. grim

    grim Gigabyte Poster

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    i was part of the overclockingstore SETI team when i was at uni about 5 years ago because the lecci was included in my bills. i wouldn't do it from home because it costs a fortune :(

    Grim
     
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  3. BosonMichael
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    BosonMichael Yottabyte Poster

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    Keep in mind that if you do it at work, you're costing your work that same fortune that you don't want to spend yourself at home. A guy named David McOwen was an instructor for a school in Georgia who installed Distributed.Net screensavers that ran a distributed computing app. He was confronted, asked to resign (which he did), and then was hit with a lawsuit for $416,000 in bandwidth charges - just think what would have happened if they had asked for the electricity charges! :ohmy In addition, the state of Georgia charged him with eight felonies - one count of computer theft and seven counts of computer trespass, each one carrying a maximum sentence of $50,000 and 15 years in prison. :blink The state finally settled for a year of probation, $2100 in restitution, and 80 hours of community service.

    So before you install that distributed computing app at work, ask yourself if it's worth all the potential complications. Protect yourself: get written permission before you install anything.

    link1
    link2

    So have I contributed to DC projects before? Absolutely. I contributed to SETI a long time ago, and I contributed to Seventeen or Bust as recently as a couple of years ago.
     
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  4. Modey

    Modey Terabyte Poster

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    Ok, I'll write myself a note to ask if I can install the software. :) Myself and WagnerK run the network at our organisation, we don't have to ask people's permission to install software.

    In terms of the electricity & bandwidth. There are less computers on now than are normally on, and the program uses very little bandwidth (also we aren't charged for our bandwidth, we pay a fixed fee for an unlimted amount - 10MB Fibre ).

    I was actually serious about using this as a burn in test for the new PC's, this is the first time they have been switched on and it's good to run them in for a couple of days.
     
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  5. Modey

    Modey Terabyte Poster

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    Having read that first link I am glad to be living in the UK and not the USA to be honest. The insanity of the lawsuit culture in America seems so know no bounds.

    Depressingly though, there are signs that it's spreading here as well.
     
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  6. ThomasMc

    ThomasMc Gigabyte Poster

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    i Fold with my PS3, i will stick the team number in see if i can get me self a new GFX card lol
     
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  7. grim

    grim Gigabyte Poster

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    try the BBC climate change, thats a good burn in program. had it running on a 16 core server at work :)

    Grim
     
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  8. Modey

    Modey Terabyte Poster

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    Why not, I think it's random who they pick, not just people who get massive scores. I was quite impressed to see a client for a console. :)
     
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  9. nugget
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    nugget Junior toady

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    I'd do it anyway (get permission that is). Even if you are allowed to install business related software without asking the people who pay the bills might have a different viewpoint.

    As BM pointed out, get it in writing. Mention it to your boss (and if it's Wagnerk then to his boss) as a good way to test the machines and help out these projects too, get him to sign a paper that he knows about it and then if it hits the fan you're covered.
     
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  10. Modey

    Modey Terabyte Poster

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    That's fair enough if that's what is required in your organisation but it's not something we have to do at ours. As long as the software we install is licensed correctly we have free reign to do what we think is appropriate. Our boss totally trusts our judgment in this regard.

    I surprised anyone has even touched on this really, it's not a big deal. :)
     
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  11. ThomasMc

    ThomasMc Gigabyte Poster

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    yip they managed to get it to use the full broadband cell
     
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  12. BosonMichael
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    BosonMichael Yottabyte Poster

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    Unless it's YOUR business, then you *should* ask permission to install software. McOwen, the dude in the story above, ran the network at *his* organization.

    In terms of the electricity, if your processor is running at full tilt, as it will when a DC app is running, it *will* consume more electricity.

    No, you're not charged for your bandwidth... but when your DC app is transmitting data, nothing else is getting out... 1 computer is no big deal... but multiply that times 10 or 100, and you start having problems.

    Plus, keep in mind that every app can interfere with every other app. Businesses tend to not like it when that happens...

    Hey, I hope you're able to get it going... but I'd rather you go into it with your eyes open than get blindsided like McOwen did...
     
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  13. BosonMichael
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    BosonMichael Yottabyte Poster

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    There's one problem with all that... they weren't McOwen's PCs. Put yourself in their shoes: if you owned the business, or were in charge of the budgets, you'd put a stop to it too. It's all fun and games until someone has to pay the bill... or clean up after a conflicting app...
     
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  14. Modey

    Modey Terabyte Poster

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    Ok let's assume for the sake of argument that I know my organisation and it's policies and my manager better than you do. I DON'T (I'll shout too) need permission to install software here, it's left down to our judgment what we install, as I explained earlier.

    Which is it then, was he an instructor or the Network Manager. I certainly didn't get the impression he was the latter of the two from reading that article.


    I think you ought to actually take a look at the software before you start assuming yet more things. For a start it doesn't run the CPU at 'full tilt' as you put it, and it also used virtually no bandwidth at all. It downloads a job (small amount of data when it starts) and then sends the results back when it finishes. We are talking a few hundred KB per client. It also doesn't sit broadcasting on the local network interfering with anything else. Also, the workations it's running on are all standalone and not joined to our domain.

    Well that will be where my years of experience in IT will help as I actually knew that. I'm not trying to be facetious, but you are coming across as a little patronising.

    I know you are trying to be helpful, but it feels more like you are having a pop for the sake of it to be honest.

    Now, if anyone would actually like to talk about Folding@Home ...
     
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  15. wagnerk
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    wagnerk aka kitkatninja Moderator

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    I'm in charge of my budget (this past year it was just under £ 1/4 million - it's changes year to year) and of IT services, if there are any problems in our organisation regarding any piece of software then it is down to me and my dept to sort it out.

    This Folding project is benefically to both Stanford Uni (as they get the results that they need) and to us (we are doing something that benefits the human race and putting something back into the "community"), thus increasing our standing.

    I don't want this thread to be blown out of proportion and concentrating on the "prospects of the graphics card prize", when I actually gave the go ahead for this project (this goes for any project) you have to look at the whole picture and decide if it's right for your organisation, which after researching it was.

    You don't have to worry about power costs, the program itself doesn't run at full load and here in our environment we have already started going "green" (in the next two months my article will be released in certmag about it). As for our broadband costs, we pay a fixed fee per year for unlimited use and as long as we adhere to our ISP t&c's there's no problem there.

    Running a community program/project like this doesn't suit everyone, but those that can contribute "Well done".

    -Ken
     
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  16. BosonMichael
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    Hey, no problem. Just wanted you guys to be safe. No harm, no foul. :)
     
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  17. wagnerk
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    wagnerk aka kitkatninja Moderator

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    No worries mate :)
     
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